Blog: The Weight of Judgement

The Weight of Judgement
The Weight of Judgement
Date: 2018-Feb-04 23:22:20 EST

I thought this was one of the more interesting things I've read recently - a famous chef deciding to ditch some earned status for their restaurant so they wouldn't feel the weight of judgement continually. In some ways I think this frees up the chef to explore more using his restaurant; in others it's more about how the weight of expectation of others can be unwanted. That's a funny bit of our psychology ; I think it's one of many social handles we tend to have that leads us to either be explicitly manipulated by others or just makes us feel burderened. On the rare circumstances I've ever felt someone looking up to me, I took care to either shake that off or add enough nuances to it that I didn't feel I'd be disappointing them when I'm just being me (my politics, my life decisions, so on). I also didn't want to start to censor myself out of a sense of obligation. I think for artists and chefs this must be even more constraining.

Like many parts of life that took me years to understand, one of my inner voices can still put together a simple argument for why nobody should feel this weight and how silly it is to ever do something like this. And that argument takes some subtlety to pull apart. I think the process of living means recognising these emotional handles and not trying to pretend we're not complicated emotional beings. Well, that and giving up on "rational actor" theories, because we're not even in the ballpark of that (and any rational actor would not be recognisably human nor would anything near one be emotionally functional).